> TEOTWAWKI Blog: Uncertainty at home and abroad



Uncertainty at home and abroad

Well, we certainly live in interesting times. Mostly blood-free revolution in Egypt. Violent civil war in Libya. Riots and protests elsewhere. It's been interesting to see the countries of the Middle East rise up one after the other, and to watch the unrest unfold in each. Pay attention to how these unfold; there are valuable lessons to learn--how revolutions start, how they can progress, what is the best way to survive them.

For the U.S., the immediate effect is uncertainty. We don't know how the situation will end up. Ideally, dictators would be replaced by fair, democratic governments who support free markets and are friendly to the West. That would be a win-win for all. But we could just as easily see new dictators, lengthy wars and instability, anti-West governments, extreme religious states and so on. Things are in motion and we don't know what they'll look like when (if?) they stabilize.

Here in the U.S., we're oil and gas prices jump, due to the instability in the Middle East, speculation and inflation. Concerns about inflation are driving up the demand for precious metals, which has brought gold and silver to record highs. Meanwhile, there's debate and protests over government spending and what to cut...the government is too big, spending too much and no one wants to cut anything. If you want some numbers to that, check out the always sobering U.S. National Debt Clock. The .gov can either raise taxes and fuel the beast, go deeper into debt or cut spending and deal with the political backlash.

Unfortunately, most of the media seems more interested in Charlie Sheen's two live-in girl friends than what's happening around us. Typical.

These are very interesting and crazy times, that's for sure. If things go badly over the next while, they could really go badly.

What can you do? Prepare. Have an emergency source of funds. Be wise with your money, minimize your expenses and develop a second (or third or fourth) stream of income. Have food and water storage. If you're in an area that could be subject to protests, riots and the like, find some place quieter to move. Be able to defend yourself and your family. All of the usual  applies in times like these...just perhaps with a bit of added urgency.